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Benin

Government and institution measures in response to COVID-19.

Government and institution measures in response to COVID-19.

Return to homepage  |  Last updated: 28 April, 2020

General Information

The mitigation and prevention measures taken so far by the authorities amount to CFAF 10 billion (about $17 million or 0.1 percent of GDP). They are also considering more ambitious measures provided that they can garner financing from donors. With the support of the WHO and the World Bank, the authorities are preparing a broader prevention and mitigation plan to buy the necessary equipment; intensify surveillance, notably at points of entries; build capacity for case confirmation and follow-up; and organize quarantine and self-isolation protocols. The authorities have started discussions with donors to mobilize financing for the plan, which is preliminarily estimated to cost at least US$ 100 million or CFAF 60 billion (equivalent to 0.7 percent of GDP).

Economic stimulus measures

(e.g. loans, moratorium on debt repayments…)

Monetary policy 

  • The regional central bank (BCEAO) for the West-African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) has taken preemptive steps to better satisfy banks’ demand for liquidity and mitigate the negative impact of the pandemic on economic activity.
  • The BCEAO first raised the liquidity made available to banks at its weekly and monthly auctions of March 23, allowing average refinancing rates to remain relatively close to the floor of the monetary policy corridor of 2.5 percent. This was followed, starting with the weekly refinancing auction of March 30, 2020, by the adoption of a full allotment strategy at a fixed rate of 2.5 percent thereby allowing banks to satisfy their liquidity needs fully at a lower rate.
  • As announced on March 21, 2020, the BCEAO has also:
    • extended the collateral framework to access central bank refinancing to include bank loans to prequalified 1,700 private companies;
    • set-up a framework inviting banks to accommodate demands from firms with Covid-19 related repayment difficulties to postpone for a 3 month renewable period debt service falling due, without the need to classify such postponed claims as NPL; and
    • introduced measures to promote the use of electronic payments. In addition, the BCEAO has announced the creation of a special 3-month refinancing window at a fixed rate of 2.5 percent for limited amounts of 3-month "COVID-19 T-Bills" to be issued by each WAEMU sovereign to help meet funding needs related to the current pandemic.

Other measures and sources

Main sources of information